*Raises the alarm over plot to alter results in Katsina, Kaduna, Kano, Zamfara
*Thanks Nigerians, asserts Atiku coasting home to victory
*Tasks INEC on transparent collation of results
*Ruling party warns against attempt to discredit exercise
Chuks Okocha, Emmanuel Addeh and Adedayo Akinwale in Abuja
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Presidential Campaign Council, yesterday, urged President Muhammadu Buhari to call his party, the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and its presidential candidate, Bola Tinubu, to order for claiming victory in an election they stood no chance.
The party, which claimed its presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, was the only one with national spread in Saturday’s presidential election, has alleged plot by some governors of the APC to alter results of the election in some states, including Katsina, Kaduna, Kano and Zamfara.
While thanking Nigerians for voting massively for Atiku, whom it said had begun to coast home to victory, the PDP also tasked the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on transparent collation of results.
At the same time, the APC Presidential Campaign Council has cautioned against attempts to discredit the election, saying not only will it fail, but that the electoral commission should be allowed to discharge its duty
In a statement by the Director of Strategic Communication, PDP Presidential Campaign Council, Dele Momodu, the party said, it would be unfair for the APC to claim victory as reported in a newspaper allegedly owned by the APC presidential candidate, Bola Tinubu.
“Our attention has just been drawn to the recklessly dangerous publication unilaterally awarding an impossible victory to the APC Presidential candidate Chief Bola Tinubu. The said newspaper is owned by Tinubu.
“The only candidate with the national spread is the PDP Presidential candidate, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar. But as a responsible citizen and respected statesman, he will never rush to the media to claim his well-deserved victory and glory after a long and torturous journey,” he said.
Explaining how Tinubu lost the election, he said, “Most of the Northern governors he also expected to help him garner votes in the Northern regions failed spectacularly to deliver the badly needed votes. He failed in the South East and South South.
“Tinubu remains the only mainstream candidate, whose homebase of South West was decimated by opposition parties in Lagos, Ogun, Ondo, Oyo, Osun and Ekiti. Most of the Northern Governors he also expected to help him garner votes in the Northern regions failed spectacularly to deliver the badly needed votes. He failed in the South East and South South,” he explained.
The Director said it was well known how thugs of the APC Chieftains and his allies took over the streets of Lagos, burning ballot boxes and documents and generally misbehaving in other to disenfranchise the determined electorates.
“Despite all of these ugly attempts at stealing victory, the APC suffered its worst cataclysmic loss in most of the polling centers in Lagos. The same happened in Kano. Incapable of ever being sobered by the crushing humiliation in its traditional territories. We woke up this morning to read about the pathetic and illegal lies cooked up by the Tinubu media goons.
“We hereby call on INEC and the federal government to cage these troublesome APC Chieftains. We have all been witnesses to their unruly behaviour as they did everything to bully and blackmail President Muhammadu Buhari in order to chicken out of the currency swap policy.
“We also witnessed how they practically intimidated the President to the extent of forcing him to publicly display who he voted for in yesterday’s elections. It was quite a bizarre, unfortunate and unprecedented scene to watch.
“We advise the president to find the courage to call the bluff of these desperate politicians, who feel they can buy the whole of Nigeria,” Momodu stated.
PDP Exposes APC’s Plot to Alter Results in Katsina, Kaduna, Kano, Zamfara, Others
The PDP has said it was alarmed by reports that Governors Aminu Bello Masari, Nasir el-Rufai, Abdullahi Ganduje and Bello Matawalle of Katsina, Kaduna, Kano and Zamfara States, were allegedly mounting pressure on officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to alter results of the presidential elections in favour of the APC.
In a statement by the National Publicity Secretary of the party, Hon. Debo Ologunagba, the PDP said, “These desperate APC governors are allegedly pressuring and blackmailing INEC officials to manipulate the results and transfer massive votes validly cast for the PDP and its Presidential Candidate, Atiku Abubakar to the rejected APC and its Presidential Candidate, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
“Our party has been informed that this nefarious scheme by the APC governors is responsible for the stalling of collation of election results in Katsina, Kano, Kaduna, Zamfara and other APC states, where the presidential candidate of the APC is alleged to have released over N11 billion per state to rig the election in his favour.
“This, our party has been made aware, is responsible for the unexplained delay in the transmission of election results from the said states to INEC Server in Abuja and the commencement of formal announcement of results by the INEC Chairman.
“There are reports that the situation is heightening apprehensions and is capable of triggering a breakdown of law and order in these states if not immediately addressed and election results as cast at the polling units are transparently collated and transmitted to INEC Headquarters in Abuja.”
The PDP demanded that the Chairman of INEC, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, cautioned the commission’s officers in Kaduna, Kano, Katsina and Zamfara States not to tamper with the results of the election as cast at the Polling Units.
PDP further stated that the INEC Chairman should also direct the immediate transmission of the results to INEC Server.
“The APC governors must respect the will of the people as expressed at the ballot as anything to the contrary will be firmly resisted by Nigerians. The PDP continues to call on the public to be calm, remain at alert and use every means necessary within the ambit of the law to ensure that their will is not subverted by the APC,” Ologunagba stressed.
Stop Lamenting, Accept Your Fate, PDP Mocks Tinubu
The Atiku/Okowa Campaign Organisation has counseled the Tinubu/Shettima Campaign to stop lamenting, but accept its fate and hold back its tears pending the official announcement of the outcome of the presidential election by INEC.
In a statement by one of the spokespersons of the campaign, Kola Ologbondiyan, PDP said it was pathetic that after failing to blackmail and compromise INEC and after failing to cause crisis to scuttle the election, the Tinubu Campaign has resorted to posting fabrications and labyrinth of lies against the Atiku/Okowa campaign as published on the front page of a newspaper believed to be owned by its Presidential Candidate, Bola Tinubu.
“Such wretched shenanigan and fixation on the PDP by the Tinubu/Shettima Campaign only exposes Tinubu’s nervousness in conviction of looming defeat by the Presidential Candidate of the PDP, Atiku Abubakar,” the statement stated.
The Atiku /Okowa said apparently rattled by their feared damaging verdict of the ballot box against its candidate, the Tinubu/Shettima Campaign was desperate to create confusion by publishing and circulating fake election results, a ploy it said would fail to fly in the face of real results coming from polling units across the country.
According to the statement, “The Tinubu/Shettima Campaign should come to terms with the decision by Nigerians to use their vote to recompense the APC for the excruciating hardship, anguish and pain it inflicted on our nation in the last seven and half years.
“Our Campaign, therefore, seriously frowns at the wicked deployment of the front page of newspaper believably to be owned by Senator Tinubu to contrive a wholesomely false narrative to deceive Nigerians.
“Such is not only a scandalous abuse of the media but also a calculated attempt to subvert our democratic system and cause confusion in the polity; a scheme which must be condemned by all.”
The Atiku/Okowa Campaign, therefore, urged Nigerians to remain calm but alert in resisting the devastated APC and the Tinubu/Shettima Campaign which is already suffering from pre-defeat trauma.
PDP Thanks Nigerians, Boasts Atiku is Coasting Home to Victory
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has asserted that from preliminary reports on the results coming from the February 25, 2023 Presidential election, it was confident its Presidential Candidate, Atiku Abubakar, was already coasting to victory.
The PDP noted that Atiku Abubakar was securing the highest number of valid votes cast as well as the statutory 25% in at least two-thirds of the states of the federation to ultimately brace the tape on the first ballot.
In a statement by the National Publicity Secretary of the party, Hon. Debo Ologunagba, PDP said, “Our party appreciates Nigerians from across the country for putting their avowed solidarity and support for Atiku Abubakar into action by coming out en masse to give their votes to the PDP, irrespective of ethnicity, creed, age and even political affiliations.
“From preliminary results, it is clear that Atiku Abubakar’s message of hope, unity, security and rebuilding of our nation has been positively received by Nigerians, who are eager to embrace a new era under a purposeful leadership, which the PDP and Atiku Abubakar embody.”
The PDP assured Nigerians that the hope which Atiku symbolises as well as the onerous task of unifying and returning the country to the path of stability, national cohesion and economic prosperity will soon begin.
“Our Party therefore calls on INEC to ensure very transparent and credible collation process in such a manner that guarantees that all votes count and that the will of the people is respected.
“INEC should not only ensure prompt uploading of results but also continue to make the result viewing portal available to the public in the interest of transparency,” the PDP stated .
The PDP congratulated Nigerians for peaceful elections despite the threats, resort to violence and desperation of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to scuttle the process, while urging them to remain calm and resilient until the final declaration of results.
Allow INEC Perform Its Duties, APC Charges Opposition
The APC Presidential Campaign Council, yesterday, said it has noticed disingenuous attempts by the opposition parties, spokesmen of their campaign councils and their hired talking heads on Television and Radio Stations to discredit the presidential and National Assembly elections.
Director, Media and Publicity, APC Presidential Campaign Council, Bayo Onanuga said, noteworthy were spokespersons of Labour Party Presidential Campaign Council and that of the Peoples Democratic Party/Atiku Presidential Campaign Council.
According to the statement, “Two persons we consider as respectable citizens, Professor Pat Utomi and Director-General of Peter Obi Campaign Council, Mr. Akin Osuntokun threw caution to the wind by their inciting and incendiary comments on social media and TV stations, where they have been making baseless and irresponsible allegations of electoral manipulations and other malpractices against our party and the electoral umpire, all in a bid to cause disaffection and civil unrest in the country.
“We must also stress that we have noticed many partisan talking heads claiming to be Election Observers on radio and TV stations, who are presenting skewed and patently false narratives about the general conduct of the election across the country.
“Both Labour Party and PDP have accused INEC of conspiracy to rig election result in favour of our party, anchoring their allegation on the agency’s inability to upload election results on its website. While we call on INEC to expedite action on the process of uploading the results, we want to state categorically that there is nothing unusual about the seeming delay.
“INEC returning officers bringing the results to the National Collation Centre from the 36 states, may be contending with possible travel logistics as witnessed on Day One of the collation on Sunday, when only Ekiti State was ready with its result. There could also be technical issues with INEC Results Viewing Portal, which we are sure the commission will quickly resolve.
“It is worth stating that election results have been announced and made public at polling units and duly signed by accredited party agents in line with the Electoral Law. There is no political party that does not have election results from all the over 176,000 polling units across the country except for few locations election didn’t hold. The Abuja Collation is merely ceremonial.
“While the law stipulates that the INEC Chairman, who is the National Returning Officer for the Presidential election should declare the result, it is also a fact that no party can claim ignorance about its performance from every polling unit through their Situation Rooms updates from party agents.
“This brazen attempt to discredit this election that is adjudged to be the most peaceful, credible, open, transparent, free and fair in the history of our country will fail. We suspect that the opposition parties making unnecessary fuss over the results of the poll are only afraid of facing the reality of their defeat. Elections are not a-do-or-die affair. They are meant to be won by some and lost by some.
“The 2023 presidential election has been successfully conducted and results announced at polling units, wards, local councils and at the state level. We advise politicians to allow the remaining part of the process to go on without intimidation and harassment of INEC.”
Keyamo: PDP Pressuring RECs to Change Results
The Director of Public Affairs and Chief Spokesperson, Tinubu/Shettima Presidential Campaign Council, Festus Keyamo (SAN), yesterday, alleged that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) was putting pressure on Resident Electoral Commissioners (RECs) to alter election results.
Keyamo, who doubles as the Minister of State, Labour and Employment, said the campaign had it on good authority that many of the RECs were resisting the pressure.
“Our usual reliable sources within the opposition parties, who still have some modicum of conscience and altruism in their veins, have informed us that chieftains of the PDP are presently putting undue pressure on some State Resident Electoral Commissioners to alter the results duly collated in the states before proceeding to Abuja to submit the results.
“This is despite the fact that the collated results are already well known by the public and the political parties as they were publicly declared, unit by unit and at the state level and electronically transmitted. This is with a view to creating disparities in both the transmitted results and the hard copies and thereby sparking nationwide crises,” the minister alleged.
He saluted what he termed the resoluteness and steadfastness of the RECS so far and encouraged them to continue their resilience in the face of such pressures.
The campaign council also saluted the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for organising what it said is one of the best elections in Nigeria from time immemorial.